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Free training Saturday intended to help more Utah women seek elected office

Published: Wednesday, Jan. 11 2012 3:43 p.m. MST

SANDY — Free public leadership training to encourage more Utah women to run for public office will be conducted from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 14 at the Larry H. Miller Campus of Salt Lake Community College, 9750 S. 300 West.

The training, which has been organized by the YWCA Salt Lake City and the University of Utah's Hinckley Institute of Politics, will also encourage women to work on political campaigns, serve on public boards and commissions and participate in public policymaking.

"The 'Real Women Run' initiative is here to first empower Utah women to want to be politically active and then give them the tools and confidence to make it happen,” said Lindsay Zizumbo, the Hinckley Institute's program manager for state and local internships.

The training will feature current and past female elected officials and public appointees, media experts and campaign managers. Topics include making the decision; research; campaign plan and structure; budget finance, and fundraising; media; message, image and presentation; staff structure; public boards and commissions; and caucuses, delegates and conventions.

Utah ranks 43rd nationally for the percentage of women who serve in the state Legislature or assembly, according to Rutgers University's Center for American Women and Politics.

Slightly more than 17 percent of Utah lawmakers are female, compared to the national average of 23.6 percent. Neighboring Colorado leads the nation at 40 percent, according to the center.

“The Hinckley Institute’s mission is to promote citizen involvement in government — our mission is not being fulfilled if half of the population isn’t fully engaging in the political process," Zizumbo said.

The Real Women Run partnership also includes SLCC, Vision 2020, representatives from all political parties in Utah, the League of Women Voters, the American Association of University Women, current and former elected female officials, Westminster College and other community organizations that support women. 

To register, contact Robin Pratt at rpratt@ywca.com or 801-537-8606. Go to www.realwomenrun.org for more information.

E-mail: marjorie@desnews.com

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